Museums Online

A blog to go with a series of workshops for museums on social media

One thing … October 19, 2009



Just as we did in Whanganui, we ended the session in Whakatane with the Bay of Plenty museums commenting on the one thing they’d like to try next. Here are those things:

‘I’d like to start a twitter account for the profiling our collection.’

‘We’ve already done some research into social media and even tried a few things – we need to develop a strategy that focuses on where we want to be further down the track.’

‘Build a business case for using social media for our council.’

‘I’m keen to see a blog set up for museum studies students to get communicate and get some experience prior to job hunting.’

‘Build professional networks … but first I need to process all the options before choosing!’

‘I’d like to use twitter for out museum and I’m trialling Facebook at home with my family … plus I think a blog would give us the opportunity to easily and quickly reflect the changing life of our museum.’

‘Develop a strategy for each of our council’s services – I can see that you need to match the tool to specific needs and audiences. We need to be able to justify what we are doing and be credible to funders and sponsors.’

Thanks to everyone for their enthusiasm – and some great blogging and tweeting ūüôā

image cc by rengber


The story behind the Otautau Museum blog

Filed under: blogging,social media — museumsonline @ 3:38 pm
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Otautau Museum

Otautau Museum

I’ve asked Cathy about the story behind the lovely Otautau Museum blog. She wrote back to me – thanks very much, Cathy! (I like the way she included all her web links and exhibition info in her email signature). If you’ve got a question for her, feel free to leave a comment …

‘I actually started with a blog for our town and then liked it so well that thought that having one for the museum would allow me to add more content for those specifically interested in what we are up to.

‘Having a blog¬†has been the most flexible outlet for us in terms of adding content easily¬†plus it’s cost effective. We are a very small, volunteer-run museum and have to keep all costs down. Having a domain name and server costs for a website¬†is really out of the question for us at this point.

‘Google Analytics shows we get around¬†0 to 1¬†visitors a day. Sometimes I’ll post on the Otautau Blog and mention that I’ve put something on the museum blog and that drives visitors over. We’re a small town, around 750 people, and most are not heavy internet users so getting visitors is tricky. It’s possible we are a little ahead of our time with regard to our own community but hopefully someday the visitor numbers will be higher if we can keep adding worthwhile content.

‘It would be great if other small museums were into blogging. Rural museums are rather isolated from each other so we don’t often get to know what others are doing.’


Otautau Museum
146 Main Street, Otautau
Mailing address: c/- 11 Knutsford Rd
Otautau 9610
New Zealand

Current displays
Student artwork – and – Local Transport
On now until 31 Dec 2009
Open Wednesdays and Sundays, 2pm-4pm

On the web
Otautau Museum Blog
Otautau Museum Website
Otautau Blog


What quilt exhibition? October 15, 2009

Filed under: exhibition — museumsonline @ 3:40 pm
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What quilt exhibition? When is it on? I’m coming to Taupo soon.


Taupo Museum

Filed under: exhibition — museumsonline @ 3:36 pm
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Illumination exhibition – national quilting exhibition coming up soon in Taupo.


Filed under: social media — museumsonline @ 3:32 pm
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I’m inspired to head back to Taupo and open a twitter account. Great possibilities to share news about museum happenings and behind the scenes activities by the team – you never know, who might be out there listening. Good to be reminded about NZ Live and NZ Museums and what they are doing to promote the NZ events and museum community.


What to do … twitter, blog, facebook, ning, flickr??

Filed under: social media — museumsonline @ 3:23 pm

Even though we have a great website, twitter, blog and facebook (ning maybe??) offer fabulous marketing opportunities!!


Themes at today’s workshop

Filed under: social media — museumsonline @ 1:19 pm
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It’s lunchtime, so I thought I’d take the opportunity to document some of the themes from the morning session of today’s workshop in Whakatane. We’re aiming to address these themes throughout the day.

  1. There’s such a variety of tools – how do you choose which ones are most appropriate for your audience?
  2. And how do you assess the workload involved (and prioritise)?
  3. How do you build a business case for your organisation to adopt social media (in light of concerns about the pitfalls and issues like copyright, security and workload)?
  4. How do you optimise your website or blog for search engines, and what does it take to promote your social media?
  5. What do you do for segments of your audience that struggle with technology (either in terms of access or confidence)?
  6. What are the ramifications for copyright?
  7. What are the ways we can use social media in our exhibitions?
  8. Who in the organisation should blog, and what sorts of policies do organisations need for social media use?

If we don’t have much time to talk about social media strategy development or how to promote social media, there are links on this blog (see the page ‘workshop links’) that provide further information …

We’re recognising that these tools are accessible and relatively inexpensive ways to promote your museum, and also excellent ways to gather feedback from your audiences.